The inauguration of manufacturing unit for AK-203 rifles by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Uttar Pradesh’s Amethi will help end the search for reliable assault rifle for the security forces.
The security forces have been demanding an all-weather durable assault rifle for a very long time. The INSAS (India Small Arms System) rifle that they use has ample of issues like gun jamming, rifle going into automatic mode when it was set for three-round bursts and oil falling on a user’s eyes during the combat, or magazine cracking during the combat operation in the freezing temperature. Ironically, INSAS rifle, was primarily meant to incapacitate enemies, but not to kill. It is longer and heavier than the weapons that the terrorists , naxals and militants use. Its not surprising that they cause heavy casualties to our armed forces.
It was during his official visit to India last October that Putin and Modi reached an agreement on producing Kalashnikov rifles in India. The deal was aimed to help manufacture AK 203, an advanced version of AK 47 , in India as part of Make in India initiative in the Amethi factory.
Ak 203 is what Indian securoty forces need. It’s magazine can hold 30 bullets. The gun has an effective range of 400 metre and is considered 100% accurate. It will be lighter and shorter than an INSAS rifle. It can host an underbarrel grenade launcher or a bayonet and all versions can be equipped with quick-detachable tactical sound suppressors. The 7.62 mm ammunition in AK-203 gun is NATO grade and therefore more powerful. The rifle, which can fire 600 bullets in one minute, means 10 bullets in a second, can be used in automatic and semi-automatic mode. The most important quality of AK-series rifles is they never get jammed. These can work under extreme climatic conditions and are effective even in sand, soil and water.
Under the ‘Make in India’ programme, the Amethi factory, that was idle for quite some time, will churn out over seven lakh units of AK-203 rifles that will replace INSAS+ being used by Army and paramilitary forces.
These will be given to Police as well.
“The new joint venture will manufacture world famous Kalashnikov assault rifles of the newest 200 series and eventually will reach full localisation of production,” Sitharaman said quoting Putin. “Thus, the Indian defence-industrial sector will have the opportunity to fulfil the needs of national security agencies in this category of small arms, resting upon advanced Russian technologies,” Putin said in his message.